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Reconstitution des fluctuations glaciaires holocènes dans les Alpes occidentales : apports de la dendrochronologie et de la datation par isotopes cosmogéniques produits in situ

Abstract : Mountain glaciers are one of the most reliable climatic proxy on Earth through their rapid response to slight changes in forcing and their wide distribution. For these reasons glacial chronologies constitutes reference series against which other paleoenvironmental reconstructions are evaluated. In the current context of global warming and glacier withdrawal worldwide, the building of such records is increasingly needed to assess these rapid and dramatic changes on the longer Late Quaternary timescale. The Holocene glacier fluctuations are now fairly well known in the Central and Eastern Alps, but datas from the Western Alps are extremely sparse, and the chronology of glacier fluctuations before the second half of the Little Ice Age (LIA) ss (1570-1850 AD) is thus poorly constrained. To fill this gap, we carried out a study on several sites distributed in three glaciated range of the French Alps (Mont Blanc, Belledonne, Ecrins). We choose a multi-proxies approach based on the implementation of several dating methods (dendrochronology, Cosmic Ray Exposure dating with 10Be, lichenometry, radiocarbon) – some of which were used for the first time on these spatial- and time-scales. This approach allowed us to propose a glacial chronology spanning the Holocene. Moreover, strength and weakness of the different methods used are discussed, and the results are compared to other high resolution proxies from the Great Alpine Region. Our results shows a picture broadly similar to the Holocene glacier variations model currently accepted in the European Alps : we shows evidence for large Early-Holocene advances prior to 9.3 ka and for the beginning of the Neoglacial period from 4.2 ka onwards. An accurate dating of the Neoglacial stadials was possible at Mer de Glace through the use of a dendroglaciological approach on subfossil woods (Pinus cembra). This site already appears as one of the most interesting in the whole Alps to study the Neoglacial period, as the chronology established there spans the last 4 ka and is the 4th record of this kind builds in the Alps. The datings presented here reveals a marked synchroneity for Neoglacial maxima at the Alpine scale, which could indicate similar forcing on glaciers from the Western fringe. Main discrepancies between the records could be explained by topographic and size characteristics of the studied glaciers, as expressed by their response time.
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Melaine Le Roy. Reconstitution des fluctuations glaciaires holocènes dans les Alpes occidentales : apports de la dendrochronologie et de la datation par isotopes cosmogéniques produits in situ. Sciences de la Terre. Université de Grenoble, 2012. Français. ⟨NNT : 2012GRENA009⟩. ⟨tel-00757164⟩

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